30 thoughts on “Nothing like a little lighthearted reading

  1. Meanwhile says:

    “North Korea will join Olympics, military talks planned, another hotline between countries restored” (Korea JoongAng Daily 1/9/18) http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/news/article/Article.aspx?aid=3043135 “Seoul and Pyongyang agreed Tuesday night to hold working-level meetings in the near future to discuss North Korea’s participation in the PyeongChang Winter Olympics next month, boost inter-Korean cooperation in various fields, have military officials meet to diffuse tension on the Korean Peninsula, solve bilateral issues among themselves without relying on outside forces — and continue to hold high-level talks.”

  2. CRM 114 says:

    “Members of President Donald Trump’s cabinet are weighing whether the U.S. should respond to future North Korean missile and nuclear tests with a targeted first strike on one of the regime’s facilities.” (Newsweek Jan 9, 2017) “Inside the White House, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Defense Secretary James Mattis are advocating a diplomatic solution, but national security adviser H.R. McMaster is pushing for military options that would show the regime the consequences of its actions, according to officials that spoke with The Wall Street Journal on Monday.”
    Meanwhile: “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — the federal agency that typically warns you about food poisoning or the flu season — said it will hold a public briefing on Jan. 16 on what to do to survive the blast from a nuclear weapon. “While a nuclear detonation is unlikely, it would have devastating results and there would be limited time to take critical protection steps,” the new CDC statement reads. “Despite the fear surrounding such an event, planning and preparation can lessen deaths and illness.” http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/opinion/the-conversation/sd-how-to-survive-a-nuclear-blast-per-cdc-20180105-htmlstory.html

  3. Elmer says:

    North Korea praises ‘Fire and Fury’ book for foretelling ‘Trump’s political demise’ (USA Today Jan 11) https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2018/01/11/north-korea-praises-fire-and-fury-book-foretelling-trumps-political-demise/1023655001/ North Korea’s Rodong Sinmun newspaper said in a commentary that robust sales for the book reflected “rapidly surging anti-Trump sentiments in the international community.” The paper added that the “anti-Trump book is sweeping all over the world so Trump is being massively humiliated worldwide” and that “voices calling for the impeachment of Trump are on the rise not only in the United States but also abroad.” Since the book was published about a week ago, it added, Fire and Fury “has triggered a debate on whether Trump is qualified to be president, even in Western Europe.”

  4. Laugh Riot says:

    “Some people in Hawaii received a rude awakening Saturday morning. At approximately 8:08 a.m. local time, residents received an alert on their phones about a ballistic missile threat. The alert message urged residents to seek immediate shelter and stated that it was not a drill.” http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/national/missile-threat-alert-hawaii-false-alarm-rattles-nerves/Bh0yGwSrDgrbEfxBdAuISN/
    Civilian Defense instructions http://www.dpvintageposters.com/cgi-local/db_images/posters/cache/2469-image-450-550-fit.jpg?Yhw2e57C

  5. Klaus says:

    Did the U.S. underestimate North Korea’s weapons program? It’s not that simple. Washington Post) https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2018/01/16/did-the-u-s-underestimate-north-koreas-weapons-program-its-not-that-simple/?utm_term=.bc2090062503
    The American scientist who’s seen North Korea’s nuclear secrets (CBS News “60 Minutes”, Jan 14, 2018) https://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-american-scientist-whos-seen-north-korea-nuclear-secrets/ “It may mostly be propaganda when North Korea boasts about its nuclear capabilities, but one American says to be careful not to underestimate the country’s power.”

    • Hope says:

      “Former LANL director discusses N. Korea’s nuclear agenda” (Santa Fe New Mexican Jan 27, 2018) http://www.santafenewmexican.com/news/local_news/former-lanl-director-discusses-n-korea-s-nuclear-agenda/article_dacbec48-a9e3-5c4c-bd36-34829e8a7bf3.html “…Hecker also sees pragmatism in Kim Jong Un, saying, “He’s not only not crazy, he’s not stupid; he’s actually quite smart.”
      While it may take many years and a concerted diplomatic effort to try to walk North Korea back toward nonproliferation, Hecker said, he pointed to Kim’s recent speech unveiling a two-pronged strategy of military and economic buildup, comparing it to China’s liberalization of capital markets that followed that country’s acquisition of nuclear weapons. The same may be true for North Korea, according to Hecker: The country opens up after it it is assured it can protect itself militarily. And, after all, North Korea’s leaders are at some point going to have to solve internal problems such as hunger, lest the North Korean people rise up against the oppressive regime.
      “Kim Jong Un is going to find out at some point you can’t eat nuclear weapons,” Hecker said.

  6. Salonière says:

    “The details of how Michael Wolff penetrated the White House are the most damning of all” https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2018/01/17/the-details-of-michael-wolffs-easy-penetration-of-the-white-house-are-the-most-damning-of-all/?utm_term=.57a6ef93f5df
    “Bloomberg News’s Jennifer Jacobs reports that Wolff worked his way into the White House by pitching the book with a laughably misleading working title — “The Great Transition: The First 100 Days of the Trump Administration” — and basically stayed there because nobody with any authority thought to question his motives or presence. It’s a spectacular comedy of errors by the White House that would be a lot funnier if this weren’t describing the seat of the federal government of the United States.
    …Are there really no safeguards against Trump being seduced by the siren song of flattery?”

  7. CRM 114 says:

    SEOUL (Reuters) – North Korea sent a rare announcement addressed to “all Koreans at home and abroad” on Thursday, saying they should make a “breakthrough” for unification without the help of other countries, its state media said. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-southkorea-kcna/north-korea-sends-rare-announcement-to-all-koreans-calls-for-unification-idUSKBN1FD33I
    “US stealth bombers in Guam appear to be readying for a tactical nuclear strike on North Korea” (Business insider) http://www.businessinsider.com/us-stealth-bombers-guam-tactical-nuclear-strike-north-korea-2018-1
    Engineers at the United States’ nuclear weapons lab in Albuquerque, New Mexico, have spent the past few years designing and testing the B61-12, a high-tech addition to our nation’s atomic arsenal. Unlike the free-fall gravity bombs it will replace, the B61-12 is a guided nuclear bomb that has both increased accuracy and earth-penetrating capabilities https://fas.org/blogs/security/2016/01/b61-12_earth-penetration/
    North Korea is in the final stages of preparing for a massive military parade to be held on the 70th anniversary of the founding of the country’s armed forces Feb 8th. The parade is considered particularly important because it will follow a year of historic military developments and comes amid sensitive negotiations with rival South Korea. https://www.38north.org/2018/01/mirim012418/

  8. 한국드라마 says:

    Lessons for today of USS Pueblo’s 1968 capture by North Korea : Political experts say there is much to be learned from the warship crisis 50 years ago that brought the Korean peninsula to the brink of a second war (South China Post 1/25/18) http://www.scmp.com/magazines/post-magazine/long-reads/article/2130571/lessons-today-uss-pueblos-1968-capture-north “…There are parallels between the Pueblo incident and the crisis now afflicting Pyongyang-Washington relations and “a small amount of miscommunication or misunderstanding of the current rhetoric can lead to a regional military escalation and conflict. That’s what we learned in 1968,” according to Jean H. Lee, a journalist, expert in North Korean affairs and global fellow with the Woodrow Wilson International Centre, in Washington DC. “And it’s just an absolutely incredible story,” she adds.
    In his book Act of War: “Lyndon Johnson, North Korea, and the Capture of the Spy Ship Pueblo” (2013), author Jack Cheevers describes the affair as “one of the worst intelligence debacles in American history”. His factual account reads like a cold war thriller, as a routine naval surveillance mission in the Sea of Japan rapidly escalates into a diplomatic incident that nearly spills over into war. See http://www.miamiherald.com/opinion/op-ed/article196516519.html

  9. Oscar G. says:

    “The Button: A Nuclear Fable” By Calvin Trillin. (The New Yorker, Jan 29, 2018 issue) https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/01/29/the-button-a-nuclear-fable
    “What A Nuclear Missile Attack On Hawaii Would Look Like” (Defense One 1/19/18) http://www.defenseone.com/threats/2018/01/what-nuclear-missile-attack-hawaii-would-look/145319/ (includes link to Nukemap, an interactive tool from Alex Wellerstein for approximating the devastation of nuclear events)

  10. Update says:

    “Trump advisers clash over ‘bloody nose’ strike on North Korea” (CNN) https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/01/politics/north-korea-trump-bloody-nose-dispute/index.html The nomination of the long-rumored candidate to be US ambassador to South Korea, Victor Cha, was pulled last weekend after he warned the White House that a so-called “bloody nose” strike against Pyongyang would risk pulling the US into a disastrous war that would endanger hundreds of thousands of lives.
    “Unpacking a US Decision to Use Force Against North Korea: Issues, Options, and Consequences (38 North) http://www.38north.org/reports/2018/01/rjervis013118/

  11. We'll see says:

    Ivanka Trump arrives at Olympics. So does a senator warning of ‘biblical’ destruction of North Korea https://finance.yahoo.com/news/ivanka-trump-arrives-olympics-senator-warning-biblical-destruction-north-korea-094724382.html
    Meanwhile “Trump warns of military action with North Korea if sanctions don’t work” (02/23/18 02:48 PM EST) http://thehill.com/policy/defense/375320-trump-warns-of-military-action-with-north-korea-if-sanctions-dont-work “Speaking at a joint press conference with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at the White House, Trump said that if the sanctions don’t work “we’ll have to go to phase two,” which he said “may be a very rough thing.”
    “We’ll have to see,” Trump said. “I don’t think I’m going to exactly play that card. But we’ll have to see. If the sanctions don’t work we’ll have to go to phase two. Phase two may be a very rough thing. May be very, very unfortunate for the world.”
    “But hopefully the sanctions will work,” Trump added. “We have tremendous support all around the world for what they’re doing. It really is a rogue nation. If they can make a deal it will be a great thing. If we can’t, something will have to happen. So we’ll see.”

  12. Pinball Wizard says:

    “What ‘DO NOT CONGRATULATE’ says about Trump — and the peril of meeting Kim Jong Un” https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2018/03/21/trump-went-way-off-script-on-his-putin-call-reinforcing-the-peril-of-his-kim-jong-un-meeting/?utm_term=.e50b93b86543 “On issue after issue, whether immigration or guns or that Oval Office meeting with Russian leaders, he has proved he can’t stay on script. In fact, he often doesn’t seem to bother even studying the script. Trump regularly appears unfamiliar with the policies he’s discussing, changes his mind within days or even hours, and makes decisions that haven’t been thoroughly vetted.”

  13. Laugh Riot says:
  14. Stranger than Fiction says:

    SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un clapped his hands as he, along with his wife and hundreds of other citizens, watched a rare performance Sunday by South Korean pop stars visiting Pyongyang, highlighting the thawing ties between the rivals after years of heightened tensions over the North’s nuclear program.

    • Ruy Lopez says:

      “A top North Korean official has made a rare apology to South Korean reporters for restricting their coverage of a concert by South Korean musicians in Pyongyang, according to a pool report Monday.” http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/news/2018/04/02/0200000000AEN20180402006551315.html “Kim Yong-chol, a top military general, is suspected of masterminding two attacks on South Korea in 2010. He visited the South last month as the chief of the North’s high-level delegation to the closing ceremony of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics. This rare and quick apology by a top North Korean official appears to reflect the recent rapprochement between the two Koreas created by the North’s participation in the Olympics.”

  15. Juche Fruit says:

    The North Korean Parliamentary Session and Budget Report 2018: Cautious Optimism for the Summit Year https://www.38north.org/2018/04/rfrank041918/ [“…the issues discussed at the SPA session provide a superficial but rare glimpse into the inner workings of North Korea’s economy and should therefore not be overlooked.”]
    (BBC) North Korea’s announcement that it is halting nuclear and missile tests has received a broad international welcome.
    Leader Kim Jong-un said further tests were not needed, as the North had demonstrated it had nuclear weapons.
    Donald Trump described the move as “good news” for the world, and South Korea said it was meaningful progress.
    The EU said it was “positive”, but called for complete denuclearisation. North Korea is preparing for historic summits with South Korea and the US.
    Early on Saturday Kim Jong-un said: “From 21 April, North Korea will stop nuclear tests and launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles.” http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-43849516 See also “Why has Kim Jong-un halted North Korean tests now?” http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-43847845

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